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WEST MIFFLIN, Pa. (KDKA) – A new owner for the Century III Mall might be the ticket for needed revitalization.
And for a short time, it appeared that the current owner of had sold the dilapidated property.
Sold to Las Vegas-based Moonbeam Capital Investments in 2013, Century III Mall, now in Chapter 11 bankruptcy, has been in decline ever since, say West Mifflin local officials.
“I just want them to see — all right, get out. You’re not welcome here anymore,” West Mifflin Mayor Chris Kelly told KDKA. “You don’t take care of your properties. You don’t take care of the road. The infrastructure is shot to hell and back. And to have a beautiful place like that — everything around there is doing well — and it’s hurting this borough financially.”
Six years ago, Moonbeam bought Century III with high expectations for growth and new customers.
“We want them to come back into the mall, feel welcome, and be part of this new experience and revitalization that we plan here at Century III Mall,” Moonbeam’s senior vice president Shawl Pryor told KDKA at the time.
Pryor promised a new revitalized mall in West Mifflin.
Six years later?
“They’ve done nothing. It’s just one lie after another,” Kelly said.
Only Dick’s and JC Penney’s remain at the site with twelve other shops inside the mall closed for now because Moonbeam has failed to fix a water line problem.
So getting rid of Moonbeam was a dream that — for a short time — Kelly and other officials thought had happened when a “Sold Sign” appeared across the mall’s website.
But then it disappeared.
Borough manager Brian Kamauf says he has no clue whether the mall was sold.
“We don’t have any record that it was sold, so I know as much as you do on that.”
Kelly says he just doesn’t believe what Moonbeam says anyway.
“They do not call us. They don’t return calls. And when they do, it’s fake information. It’s misleading information,” he said. “They’ve done nothing. It’s just one lie after another.”
Local officials say they’d welcome a new owner.
“We’re very business friendly,” Kamauf said. “We understand the need for the business in the community. We want to work with them.
“That would be the message to the new owner — that we’re willing to work, and we want to see that place succeed again.”
KDKA has reached out repeatedly to Moonbeam, but so far no response from them.
But if the latest website is correct, Century III has not yet been sold.
On Monday, a bankruptcy judge agreed to allow the mall’s owners to borrow up to $5 million to make repairs, so the building would once again be safe for occupancy.
Last week, officials in West Mifflin closed down the mall, deeming it “uninhabitable” after the building’s sprinkler system burst.